Adjustable XRay Shader

  • July 27, 2015
  • Blender 2.7x
  • Render: Cycles
  • Creator: Mr_Lamppost
  • License: CC-0
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An X-Ray Shader node group to add an x-ray like effect to any closed object. The results are unpredictable when used with open objects or objects with overlapping or intersecting faces. There are controls allowing the effect to be customised to suit your object. It could also be used to give a hologram effect to objects in sci-fi scenes.

Please Note:- Only the first example object is included in the blend.

The node group inputs.

Color: Controls the overall hue of the x-ray effect; the value and saturation are set within the shader group.

Edge Tightness: Higher values pull the variation in colour of the x-ray effect towards the edges (Areas perpendicular to the camera). Values below 1 give a more solid look by spreading out the colour variation, values below 0.5 will fade the effect to white.

Volume Multiplier: Use this multiplier to scale the volumetric component of the shader to the size of the object. Set to zero to remove the volumetric element.

These instructions are also contained within the .blend file.


  • sendinthejagdpanther profile picture

    Could this be done as a material for internal as well as a shader for cycles?

    Written July 29, 2015
  • Mr_Lamppost profile picture

    Interesting question. I've not used internal for ages but I don't remember there being a way to combine a surface and volume in a single material. It should be possible to do the surface part.

    Written July 29, 2015
  • Tozan profile picture

    Would be intersting for Holo Conversations transmissions... This shader could be useful because I'm doing a sci-fi game and needed HOLO Graphic Objects on the ship

    The 3d neon x-ray effect works in the blender engine environment, but what if you want that effect to be imported out with your model to put that xray effect in a video game in Unreal 4 Engine?

    Because when I delete the example model then paste in my custom model, it only shows the 3d xray effect in the viewport window, not during the final rendering.

    Written July 31, 2015
  • Mr_Lamppost profile picture

    As a response to sendinthejagdpanther's comment I have a partially working version of this shader for the Blender Internal renderer, some work to do but will publish when finished. I don't use the game engine but after a quick test this will work if GLSL shading and the Nodes options are selected. I don't have Unreal 4 so can't help there.

    Written July 31, 2015
  • JohanW profile picture

    Original post: "I love this shader, but I'm having a problem. The shader looks great in the cycles viewport, however when I try to render the rendered image leaves great chunks of the image transparent and the model looks fragmented. Anybody have any ideas as how to fix this?"

    UPDATE: I figured out that the problem went away after I unchecked the Transparent box in Render properties.

    Written September 14, 2020